Tag: Philosophy of Technology

  • Clive Lawson’s Technology & Isolation (ch 1-3)

    What is technology? I often use the term overly loosely to refer to devices, as well as the distributed systems in which they are embedded. In Technology & Isolation Clive Lawson observes how the term is “frequently portrayed as knowledge, as artefacts, as ways of doing things, as any means to an end, as a […]

  • Accelerating into the singularity 

    The singularity is a speculative notion referring to the point at which exponential innovation generates a fundamental transformation of human civilisation. As Murray Shanahan puts it in on loc 78 of his book The Technological Singularity: In physics, a singularity is a point in space or time, such as the center of a black hole […]

  • The original sin of the digital utopians

    There’s a fascinating mea culpa in Jaron Lanier’s new book Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now. On loc 411 he describes how early design decisions, inspired by the libertarian ethos taking hold within the tech community, created the openings for the global monopolies we now see emerging: Originally, many of us who […]

  • CfP: The Cultural Life of Machine Learning: An Incursion into Critical AI Studies

    How good does this look? So much of this chimes with the paper I’m currently struggling to finish The Cultural Life of Machine Learning: An Incursion into Critical AI Studies Preconference Workshop, #AoIR2018 Montréal, Canada Urbanisation Culture Société Research Centre, INRS (Institut national de la recherche scientifique) Wednesday October 10th 2018 Machine learning (ML), deep […]

  • Some brief thoughts on chronopolitics

    It occurs to me when confronted with this that there are ever more contexts in which contemporary capitalism undermines the ability to plan ahead. This is striking because much of financialised capitalism is predicated on ensuring the calculability of the future through instruments like futures and securities which lock in certain expectations of future outcomes […]

  • Call: Moral Machines: Ethics and Politics of the Digital World

    This looks fantastic!  CALL FOR PAPERS: MORAL MACHINES? THE ETHICS AND POLITICS OF THE DIGITAL WORLD 6-8 March 2019, Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies, University of Helsinki With confirmed keynotes from N. Katherine Hayles (Duke University, USA) and Bernard Stiegler (IRI: Institut de Recherche et d’Innovation at the Centre Pompidou de Paris) As our visible […]

  • CfP: AI, Robotics and Responsibility

    This looks fascinating: FROM THE HRC-SCHOLARS LISTSERV: Dear members, Please find attached for the call for papers from my institution’s anniversary conference. My institution being TILT (The Institute for Law, Technology and Society in Tilburg, The Netherlands), you might find this one a bit out there but we have several tracks for which we secifically […]

  • Putting agents, ethics and politics at the heart of our account of platform capitalism

    Notes for week 4 of the CPGJ Platform Capitalism Reading Group I thought this short talk by danah boyd was really powerful in linking the utopian dreams of internet radicals to the anxieties and outcomes of work. Framing the future of work in terms of automation, as if that says everything which is needed to […]

  • From homo economicus to homo digitalis

    In a recent paper, I’ve argued we find a cultural project underpinning ‘big data’: a commitment to reducing human being, in all its embodied affective complexity, stripping it of any reality beyond the behavioural traces which register through digital infrastructure. Underlying method, methodology and theory there is a vision of how human beings are constituted, […]

  • CfP AAA2018 San Jose: Panel Digital Infrastructures

    Digital Infrastructures: Poetics, Politics and Personhood – AAA San Jose 14-18 November 2018 Lorraine Weekes (Stanford University) Gertjan Plets (Utrecht University) Government databases, digital archives, online voting systems, and e-portals enabling the submission of everything from insurance claims to income tax returns increasingly define mundane engagements between citizen-users and a suite of public and private […]

  • Social Media and The Demotic Imaginary

    One of the most prominent tropes of social media is the crowd. As the cyber-utopian Clay Shirky put it: here comes everybody. This endlessly repeated motif sees social media in terms of the people. Where once there were a few commentators who dominated the airwaves, now everybody has their say online. Where once there were a few […]

  • The epistemic privilege of platforms

    What is the relationship between platforms and their users? I’ve been thinking about this all morning while reading The Know‑It‑Alls: The Rise of Silicon Valley as a Political Powerhouse and Social Wrecking Ball, by Noam Cohen. On loc 277 he writes: In fact, tech companies believe that through artificial intelligence tools they understand their users’ state of […]

  • Social media fosters egotism rather than individualism

    What is the relationship between social media and individualism? It is often claimed that these platforms engender a preoccupation with the self, easily cast in terms of individualism. But it is a preoccupation which is just as often claimed to be profoundly social, in so far as that it involves a concern with how many […]

  • Getting beyond pro and anti in our thinking about technology

    A few weeks ago, I saw a collaborator of mine give a talk in which he outlined a position on social media which was roundly cast as anti-technological by those in the room i.e. reflecting an unsustainable blanket judgment of social media as a category of technology. I could see where they were coming from […]

  • CFP EASST2018: “Data Worlds? Public Imagination and Public Experimentation with Data Infrastructures”

    # Data Worlds? Public Imagination and Public Experimentation with Data Infrastructures ## Convenors – Jonathan Gray (King’s College London) – Noortje Marres (University of Warwick) – Carolin Gerlitz (University of Siegen) – Tommaso Venturini (École Normale Supérieure Lyon) ## Short abstract How do data infrastructures distribute participation across society and culture? Do they participate in […]

  • CfP: Social Theory in Information Systems Research

    Call for Papers: AMCIS 2018 Minitrack: Social Theory in Information Systems Research (STIR ’18) Track: Social Inclusion (SIGSI)24th Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS), Aug. 16-18, 2018 New Orleans, LA, USA This minitrack solicits papers using social theory to critically examine ICTs and their roles in enabling and constraining social inclusion. What can be done […]

  • CfP: Articulating Voice

    ICA Pre-Conference “ARTICULATING VOICE. THE EXPRESSIVITY AND PERFORMATIVITY OF MEDIA PRACTICES” Sponsored by the Philosophy, Theory and Critique (PTC) Division of the International Communication Association Event date: 24 May 2018, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Prague, Czech Republic Deadline for proposals: 10 January 2018 (300-500 words abstract) Location: Main Conference Hotel Organizers: Christian Pentzold (University […]

  • Social ontology and the challenge of suitcase words

    This is a wonderful expression I just picked up from Machine, Platform, Crowd by Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson. As they describe on pg 112-113, suitcase words jumble together multiple meanings in a way which renders questions more obscure than they would otherwise be: Is generative-design software really “creative?” It’s a hard question because creativity is […]